Monday, 20 June 2016

Lore-appropriate Voss names

In my previous Fashion Friday post (Fashion Friday: Like a Voss), I wrote a guide on how to create a head canon Voss character in Star Wars: the Old Republic. The guide focuses on how you can make your character look as physically close to a Voss as possible (as you cannot roll a character of the race officially in-game), but one thing was missing: how to name your Voss. I couldn't find any guide for Voss names, so I decided to do some research and write one myself. Here you go!

Naming conventions

  • General make-up: one or two syllables, hyphon, one syllable.
  • No alliterations.
  • Last syllable often ends on a vowel; -a, -e and -o are particularly popular.
  • 2nd syllable of female names often end on -a.

Full list of known Voss names

It turned out to actually be hard to find named Voss NPCs. While there are a lot of Voss on planet Voss, most of them are unnamed or only have a tag showing their position and/or rank. I checked all outposts on both Imperial and Republic side and many didn't have any named Voss at all! After that, I went through screenshots of flashpoints and class stories to look for more Voss names, but without much success. That said, I didn't have the time to play through all Voss quests myself recently, so it's likely that I did miss some that are hidden in quest instances. If you know a name I missed, let me know in the comments and I'll add it to the list.

Sama Zo


There; I hope that was of any help with finding the perfect Voss name for your character.

Gender discrepancy

Now if you look at the list, there seems to be an overwhelming majority of male over female named Voss characters (25 male vs 7 female). I find this interesting, so I want to look at this briefly. I see two possible explanations:
1) Voss society is a patriarchy, or at least a society where people of the male gender predominantly take in positions that allow for communication with 'outsiders'. However, the codex entries on the Voss somehow fail to mention this;
2) The game developers working on Voss didn't consider gender representation while designing quest lines. Countless studies show that we think of male as the default in Western society, and this is something that is taught to us unconsciously, starting at a young age.

Now this would make for an interesting dev question; something else than the usual game balance and nerf inquiries. But of course nobody will ever ask such an explosive question.

I think it says something that nobody noticed this; at least I didn't, until I started counting. This says something about us and our expectation patterns, too. Overall I'd say Bioware is doing a great job at this sort of thing: there are plenty of strong women in their games, and SWTOR is no exception. If anything, when it comes to gender equality, the SWTOR universe feels more desirable to me than real life. It may be that gender has been a conscious factor when designing protagonists, but has been forgotten when it comes to 'the plebs'.

But I'm just hypothesising here. In order to say something scientifically conclusive about gender equality in the SWTOR galaxy, one would have to hunt down all NPC names on all planets, make lists sorted on race and gender and count them. This is not something I intend to do: it goes beyond the scope of this little gamer diary, which is to share my enjoyment of games, and occasionally leave some food for thought. So I'll just leave it at this observation and move on.

I'd say, let's all create head canon female Voss characters to even out the scale!


  1. I just wanted to say that I admire the effort you put into this, even though I personally find the Voss boring and don't get why anyone would want to play one. :P

    I find the gender disparity you note particularly interesting because I thought the female Voss were a lot more memorable on the whole. Sana-Rae is one of your Alliance experts of course, and you see Talsa-Ko every time you run Battle of Ilum. The Commando from the Jedi knight class story was pretty cool too, though I had to look up her name (Tala-Reh). I wouldn't have been able to remember a single male Voss's name though, and the only one I can think of as being a memorable character is the guy from the Jedi consular class story (Gaden-Ko).

  2. There's also Bas-Ton and his family from the Imperial Agent storyline (which also features two named females; his daughter Yana-Ton and a mystic in the Shrine of Healing - although I can't remember her name on the fly - who you explore your past with). They're particularly fascinating as they're by far the most 'ordinary' Voss on the surface (in spite of the true identity of the Bas-Ton you meet, he still runs a tea-house!) and provide a more than interesting insight into how outsiders are ingratiated into Voss culture.

    In spite of the gender discrepancy, it's still worth mentioning that there is of course a female member of The Three. Granted, she is one of the only few characters in the game whose husband can actively 'cheat' on her with a female player (in this case a Smuggler), so even this isn't safe from discrepancy...


    On the subject of Voss and whilst I remember; I find it very amusing that, in spite of all Voss you encounter on Voss being thin and gangly as mentioned in your Fashion Friday, there has been at least one recorded example of a male Body Type 4 Voss, as shown in a hologram during the Consular's class quest on Rishi. I also still want to know how a female Voss managed to get into the Temple of Sacrifice of all places, but that will probably never get answered.

  3. Oh man, I spend an hour running around on Voss, trying to look for NPC names; you two jump in and casually mention a bunch I overlooked! It is much appreciated, though. I've added the new names to the list and sorted it alphabetically, while I was at it. It's good to have at least a bit more female Voss names, because the evidence was scarce as it was. Cool to see that "2nd syllable of female names often end on -a" still stands; reinforced a bit, even. In fact, *all* female names have -a in their second syllable, but one of them has the hyphon in between. Thank you both for your help!

  4. I love this! Naming characters is a favorite past time and I have a few systems down for fantasy characters—elves, dwarves, orcs, trolls, etc. (Shameless plug: check out my latest blog post for how to name your elf.) I’m not very good at creating names for “space” or futuristic characters, although some fantasy names can work for both. Thanks for this great list! I’m sure I’ll be referring to it down the road. ~Mama Druid

    1. Thank you! I enjoy coming up with a name I'm happy with, I always try to make my names lore-appropriate and a character name can be a deal breaker for me, BUT I'm not so hardcore into linguistics as you and this post was a bit out of my comfort zone. There was just no info whatsoever about Voss names on the internet when I was making Rava-Lae, though, so I reckoned I might as well share my findings here, just in case someone else would want to make one. (Which seems unlikely, btw, since everyone's response to this post has been: "great guide, but I hate the Voss". :P)

      And shameless plugs are very welcome here on Ravalation! I always like reading more about related subjects or other people's opinions, and I'm sure people that read the comments do, too. So don't be shy!

      Proper Plug: Name your character: Elves (Mama Druid)


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